In light of current events, I find it’s the perfect time to do one of the things I enjoy most: reminisce about the past. It’s also the perfect time to look forward. With most sporting events put on indefinite hold, not only are there no sports to watch on TV, but we find ourselves unable to fulfill our passion doing what we enjoy most, getting on the track.
It makes sense that now would be a great time spent doing things that are needed to the racecar, but if you’ve done all that you can do to the racecar for the time being, have you considered spending some time fine-tuning your brain? There is a lot of reading material available online and now’s the time to take advantage of that. There are countless offerings about driving technique, suspension, new products, and the list is long.
The old adage “time flies,” originating from the Latin phrase “tempus fugit,” is one many of us find ourselves saying, even when we feel like time moves like a snail. The flight of time can be so fast it can feel, upon reflection, like life is passing us by. Whether we’re looking at photos of old friends, reflecting on school days, or thinking of cherished childhood memories, we will often find ourselves asking, “Where’d the time go?”
When I was 14 years old, my father and I were headed to Yellowstone National Park, something we were excited about. Halfway there, I asked, “Dad are we almost there? Why does everything have to take so long?” My father laughed and said, “Just wait, there will come a time that you will ask, ‘Where has the time gone? Why does everything have to happen so fast?’ and you’ll wish it didn’t. Believe me.” Well, dad, you were right. What I wouldn’t give to have some of that time back.
And before we realize it, there will soon come a time, we will all be back at the track, getting into our drivers suits, warming up our engines while buckled in and sitting on grid thinking to ourselves, “Could I or should I have done a few more things to the car during that break? Hmm, I wonder if any of these other drivers learned anything from articles or made any changes to their cars that I might have benefited from? Well, it’s too late now. Here we go!”
These are the times we can seize the opportunity to learn, reflect, rest and prepare. Drag out those old in-car videos and enjoy them but also, learn from them. Feel those desires to brake later or get on the gas sooner when exiting. Stop convincing yourself it’s the angle of the camera that’s creating an illusion and further convincing yourself that you really can’t brake later or go faster. You can! The truth is looking you right in the face, and your brain is telling you what you’re doing wrong. Learn to listen to it! Believe it or not, your own brain is smarter than you are. Then again, so is the guy driving the car that’s always winning races. He’s really no better than you. He just learned to listen to himself.
At the end of the day, when you finally do manage to slow time down, which requires defying the laws of physics, you will realize we can do things to pace ourselves and create more lasting impressions of our memorable past, and in the blink of an eye you will be back on the track doing what we all love most … racing with NASA.